Oct 29, 2014

Review: Maddy West and the Tongue Taker


Maddy West and the Tongue Taker
Maddy West and the Tongue Taker by Brian Falkner

My rating: 3 of 5 stars



BOOK DESCRIPTION :

Maddy West can speak every language in the world. When she is asked to translate some ancient scrolls, Maddy is excited. But the scrolls hide many secrets. Secrets that send Maddy on a wild adventure with a stowaway ninja, a mysterious monkey, a Bulgarian wrestler and a fiendish witch. And soon Maddy finds herself in deadly peril. Does Maddy have what it takes to save herself and her new friends?


REVIEW:

The beautiful cover illustration is what first drew my attention to this book.

This children's book was my first Brian Falkner book and I enjoyed it. Donovan Bixley's illustrations added so much humor and excitement to the story.

Maddy West is a normal girl, with a devoted friend / neighbor. Maddy discovers that she can speak in many languages or tongues. It seemed to me that her mother and others wanted to exploit her talent near immediately.

I was given this book free of charge before publication to provide an himst review.

i found the book pretty interesting for many reasons. Many children (heck even adults) would love to discover they can speak and understand different languages. It was exciting that a child could travel to many lands and meet many races of people. Most realistically a child can not travel the world without adequate adult supervision, but in a child's mind that would be excitement.

The characters she meets along the way are quite creative and entertaining. Mr. Chester was funny and added a light hearted feel. Her best friend from back home gave who was with her provided that true friend bond needed in so many children's books.

The pacing and writing kept the reader wanting to know what was coming next and provided plenty of action and entertainment as the story carried on.

I was bothered most by the fact that a mother would be so eager to send her child across the world into the hands of no telling who to be used because of her talent so easily and carelessly. Even Maddy's best friend, a child himself, didn't settle for that.

Great illustrations!






View all my reviews

Oct 14, 2014

Review: Hush


Hush
Hush by Stacey R. Campbell

My rating: 4 of 5 stars



Review:

This young adult read was enjoyable and relaxing. I enjoyed the pace and the conflicting feelings of the characters in trying to make the situation best, figuring out who fits where. Max is a good guy who set out on an honorable mission, but finds his feelings getting tangled in the process. I really liked Max's character and his morals and sense of right.

I also love reading about kids in boarding schools. It seems so interesting that some children get to leave their parents to gain individualism so early in life. Plus who doesn't dream that they will find out they are a princess??

I was given this book to provide an honest review for and I genuinely liked the slow pace from apocalyptic panic that I had been reading. There are mysteries to be solved in this story and surprises here and there, but the nice, slow pace was a great change.



Book description:

For small-town girl Blakely Henry, any hope of finding her biological parents died when she stopped believing in fairy tales and Disney princesses. That is, until she spots her boarding school’s new British exchange student, Max Ryder, staring at her. Why would a boy who looks like he stepped out of the pages of a magazine be looking at her? Because Max knows something Blakely doesn’t.
Following the tragic demise of one of Europe’s most beloved royal families, Max has stumbled upon information he thinks may lead to a lost royal heir, and now he is on a quest halfway around the world to see if he’s right.
Sworn to secrecy by his university professor and the headmaster of Lakeview Academy, Max is admitted into an exchange program with the sole purpose of finding out the truth. But will his personal feelings for Blakely get in the way?
When a stolen email surfaces, Blakely and her friends’ lives are threatened, and Max starts to question what he is really after.
From the exclusive rolling lawns of Canada’s most prestigious boarding school to the University of Saint Andrews’ hallowed grounds, Blakely’s quiet, unassuming life is turned upside down. Is she really who she thinks she is? Can she survive long enough to help Max unearth the truth?



View all my reviews

SPOOKTACULAR BOOK Hop ~ dEaDINBURGH ~ Mark Wilson autographed copy + many other giveaways!





1 autographed copy to the winner
Oct 15-31st


dEaDINBURGH







Edinburgh, 1645:
The bubonic plague rages. In a desperate attempt to quarantine the infected, the city leaders seal the residents of Mary King's Close in their underground homes.

2015:
Mary King's Close is reopened, unleashing a mutated plague upon the city residents.
The UK government seals the entire city. Declaring it a dead zone they seal the survivors inside alongside the infected. dEaDINBURGH is declared a no man's land, its residents left for dead and to the dead.

2050:
Joseph MacLeod, born onto the cobbles of the Royal Mile and stolen from the clutches of the infected is determined to escape the quarantined city. Under the guidance of former marine Padre Jock, he leaves the confines of the city centre and hones his archery and free-running skills.
Alys Shephard, born into an all-women farming community believes a cure lies in the south of the quarantined zone. The finest combatant in the dead city, Alys burns with anger. The anger of an abandoned child.

Something much worse than the infected waits for them in the south, in the form of a religious cult led by a madman named Somna who collects gruesome trophies and worships the dead body of a former celebrity. Added to this the enigmatic Bracha, a supreme survivalist and sadistic former Royal with his own agenda, stalks the teenagers.

A self-contained story, dEaDINBURGH is a character-driven Young Adult/Horror/Dystopian novel exploring the human capacity for good, evil and for survival.(less)
Paperback, 332 pages
Published March 10th 2014 by Paddy's Daddy Publishing (first published February 27th 2014)
ISBN1494836394 (ISBN13: 9781494836399)
edition languageEnglish

a Rafflecopter giveaway









Bio:
Mark Wilson is married father of two, currently living in Edinburgh with his wife, their son, Patrick and baby daughter, Cara.

Mark left Bellshill Academy in 1991, qualification-free. And worked his way through a huge number of jobs including, window-cleaner, delivery driver, Levi's salesman, microbiologist and cinema usher.
Mark returned to full time education nine years later, earning his Highers and a degree in micro-biology before entering teaching.

Mark currently teaches Biology in a Fife secondary school and is founder of Paddy's Daddy Publishing, a company he set up to assist independent authors. He writes in his spare time, in lieu of sleep.
 As well as the his autobiography, Paddy's Daddy, Mark is the author of several four fiction novels. Bobby's Boy, Head Boy, The Man Who Sold His Son the bestselling Naebody's Hero and dEaDINBURGH. His novels have been well received and feature Scottish characters. Mark has several other books in progress. Somebody's Hero (sequel to Naebody's Hero), Prophets (an irreverent look at the return of Moses and Jesus), ML4 (a YA time-travel novel), a follow-up to dEaDINBURGH and the thriller, Black and Blues.

Mark Wilson. Lanarkshire-born; Edinburgh-based author of Bobby's Boy, Naebody's Hero, Head Boy, The Man Who Sold His Son and the dEaDINBURGH series.

You can find me and my books here:
AmazonUS AmazonUK Goodreads Facebook dEaDINBURGH

Founder of Paddy's Daddy Publishing








Oct 8, 2014

Review: Yoda's Secret Missions


Yoda's Secret Missions
Yoda's Secret Missions by Ace Landers

My rating: 4 of 5 stars



These three original stories star the greatest heroes and villains of LEGO(R) STAR WARS(TM)!

Yoda, the ultimate Jedi Master, has 900 years' worth of stories to tell! This humorous and action-packed book features all our favorite heroes and villains in three original stories!

What happens when Obi-Wan, Yoda, and a new class of Padawans must battle Sith Lords in Podraces, fight bounty hunters in the Jedi Temple, and defeat stormtroopers in the swamps of Dagobah? Hilarious adventures will ensue!(less)


REVIEW:

My 9 year old son loves these LEGO books. He also likes Star Wars a bit too. It seems these days that if any youth book has Lego characters it is a hit. This book was fun and funny. The characters were exceptionally well drawn. It reminded me of the children looking at their own Legos realistically put together in a story which helps the child to feel like an actual part. Series books are great for young readers.

I was given this book and have provided an honest review as I agreed to do. It is books like this LEGO book that encourages my son to read. He loves the humor and imagination, so I feel these books are really hitting their target audience. Keep up the good worl. I also catch my husband (a long time Star Wars fan) looking through each of these books we leave laying around.



View all my reviews

Review: Forty Acres


Forty Acres
Forty Acres by Dwayne Alexander Smith

My rating: 4 of 5 stars



DESCRIPTION:
What if overcoming the legacy of American slavery meant bringing back that very institution? A young black attorney is thrown headlong into controversial issues of race and power in this page-turning and provocative new novel.

Martin Grey, a smart, talented black lawyer working out of a storefront in Queens, becomes friendly with a group of some of the most powerful, wealthy, and esteemed black men in America. He’s dazzled by what they’ve accomplished, and they seem to think he has the potential to be as successful as they are. They invite him for a weekend away from it all—no wives, no cell phones, no talk of business. But far from home and cut off from everyone he loves, he discovers a disturbing secret that challenges some of his deepest convictions…

Martin finds out that his glittering new friends are part of a secret society dedicated to the preservation of the institution of slavery—but this time around, the black men are called “Master.” Joining them seems to guarantee a future without limits; rebuking them almost certainly guarantees his death. Trapped inside a picture-perfect, make-believe world that is home to a frightening reality, Martin must find a way out that will allow him to stay alive without becoming the very thing he hates.

A novel of rage and compassion, good and evil, trust and betrayal, Forty Acres is the thought-provoking story of one man’s desperate attempt to escape the clutches of a terrifying new moral order.




REVIEW:

I thought the concept of this novel was very interesting. I read the novel quickly and was not bored. I have read some reviews which said the story is unrealistic. I did not find the story any more unrealistic than the REALITY & horrors and the fact that slavery slavery has, and does exist in many cultures over history. People are slaves right now. That seems pretty realistic to me.

Injustice and inequality has and will always exist. The most unbelievable part is that the group accepted Martin as like minded (agreeing with slavery of whites) when he was so obviously not prejudice. That far from ruined the story though.

I found it refreshing that Martin realized that these white people being abducted and such (don't want to spoil the story)…. But Martin, like many today, realize that the sins of the past were committed in the past and that not all white nor black people hold current people accountable for what their ancestors done. (Ancestors they did not even know of course).

I could not put the book down. It was one of the best books I have read this year. It would have been easy for Martin to go along and live the good live, bury his morals as many would have done.

This story was also very moving. I always get upset when reading how other humans have been abused and misused throughout history. Many raves (& women) have and continue to suffer injustice at the hands of the more powerful, stronger monsters in this world. I love books where someone like Martin is not willing to go along with the gang because he knows right from wrong . Even though his own life is in danger, he still refuses to do the horrid things expected of him from his "new friends".

I also liked the bravery of his wife to not just go along with the innocent mindedness expected of the women. She is an intelligent woman, a strong character, who doesn't just accept lies at fave value.


This novel was very shocking and original. I was stuck to it and found my heart racing and tearing apart at times in gear for the characters. I highly recommend this book I was provided with to give an honest opinion of. It was an action packed and suspenseful read that was also so heart touching and disturbing on so many levels.






View all my reviews

Oct 5, 2014

Review: Mr. .44 Magnum


Mr. .44 Magnum
Mr. .44 Magnum by Michael Anthony

My rating: 5 of 5 stars



BOOK DESCRIPTION:


It starts in the middle of spring with a patch of dead grass. A month and a half later, the last leaf in the world lets go of a starving branch and falls to its grave.

The Earth is dead.

As the daughter of a Navy SEAL and survivalist, seventeen-year-old Shade and her sisters Rikka and Lou have more than enough food, water, and bullets to survive whatever the world can throw at them. With their father out fighting to maintain order throughout the States, the girls are determined to hold down the fort until he returns. But when Shade and Rikka’s eyes change color, and Lou suddenly vanishes, leaving behind only an X on a map, they realize staying home is no longer an option.

Locked, loaded, and on a mission to find Lou, they step out into a dead world filled with marauders, cannibals, and hungry wolves. But as they venture closer to the location marked on the map, they discover that their greatest threat isn't Eaters or starvation, but each other.


REVIEW:

The first and foremost problem with this book was that it was too dang short! I loved the characters, and where The story was going ... Wherever that is. I was glued to the book & had no idea it was so short... Such a tease. I have to read the next installment. What is happening to the people? Why? How? I HAVE TO KNOW.

I received this book free of charge in agreement to provide honest feedback. The descriptions of the dead earth were so eerie. The pressure from the outside is intense, as well as the tension between the sisters who could have stayed hidden in the bunker. I too would have been about stir crazy, but do not know if I should have had Shade's nerve to come out.

I am hoping they have found some allies, but the mysterious disappearances have got me on edge and I am anxious to see what is next.





View all my reviews

Oct 2, 2014

Review: Legacy of the Claw


Legacy of the Claw
Legacy of the Claw by C. R. Grey

My rating: 5 of 5 stars



REVIEW:

I was pleased to receive Legacy of the Claw - Animas book 1 - in this series by C.R. Grey free for himest review. this book is great for 8-12 year olds, so my son and I read it together. The idea of an Animas bond linking humans to animals was very exciting and opened up my son's imagination. My son also commented that the setting, Fairmount Academy, was similar to Harry Potter. The field the students played was also kind of close with the Harry Potter series for my liking. These similarities seemed to harm originality because I found myself thinking about Potter while I was trying to focus on Bailey.

Bailey Walker was a determined character I couldn't help but admire in his will to find out why he had an Absence, or lack of bond with an animal. Bailey makes some true friends at his new school while also hoping that an instructor there, Tremelo, will help him awaken his Animas bond - or find his kin. Bailey discovers that his kin - the animal he is to bond with- could be extinct.

Bailey and his friends go through many struggles trying to discover their own issues while realizing they may be in the middle of much more serious issues than just an absence, or lack of animal kin. I liked to read about children my own age doing things for themselves and taking on mature, independent roles in their lives when I was 8-12, and I think many kids that age will appreciate the various character's independence and ability to think for themselves in this book.

I enjoyed the suspense and mysterious unfoldings in Legacy of the Claw, but I did find it hard to read this book out loud. The sentences did not have a smooth flow for reading out loud. I'd often have to pause and rethink / reread a sentence to make it make sense, which slowed down the reading out loud of the story.

I very much enjoyed the revelations at the end of the book. I suggest if you get bogged down while reading a slow spot, just know that the pace of the story picks up tremendously.



BOOK DESCRIPTION:
To twelve-year-old Bailey Walker, kin means more than just family. It means being a part of the Animas bond, a harmonious link that connects humans and animals, and guides everything in his world. But Bailey hasn't found his kin yet, and without an Animas, he's destined to be an outsider-or worse, lose his mind entirely. So when he's accepted into the prestigious Fairmount Academy, he's determined to Awaken to his Animas once and for all, even if it's a measly worm.

But once there, Bailey can't resist the pull of the dark mysteries surrounding the kingdom. A bear has been viciously attacked on school grounds, and when he and his friends discover signs of a ferocious predator in the woods surrounding campus, he knows something's out there, something dangerous. And Fairmount isn't the only place where darkness is brewing. In the capital city, a new leader preaches that humans must assert power over their kin, enslave them instead of living as one.

Bailey can't shake the feeling that the root of the unrest, and the key to his Awakening, lies in an old riddle entwined around an even older prophecy-a prophecy that may reveal the truth about the rightful king of Aldermere. And Bailey may be the only one who can unravel them. The capital's dark forces will stop at nothing to prevent the prophecy from coming true. If they succeed, the Animas bond will be in peril. Can Bailey help protect the Animas bond while still trying to awaken to his own? In this first installment of the gripping ANIMAS series, the battle is just beginning.









View all my reviews

Oct 1, 2014

Review: Angry Birds Comics Volume 1: Welcome to the Flock


Angry Birds Comics Volume 1: Welcome to the Flock
Angry Birds Comics Volume 1: Welcome to the Flock by Jeff Parker

My rating: 5 of 5 stars



REVIEW:

Who would have thought the crazy game my son showed me on the iPhone years ago was going to BOOM, and take shake up the world in such a way. Angry birds from video game to toys, shirts, stuffed animals, cars, and on, and on, and on . . . COMIC BOOK. Of course our little strange characters need personalities, and not only personalities, but they have a story to tell. Apparently many stories filled with action and mischief.

I was given this book free of charge to provide an honest review of. As usual, when I am awarded a children's book for review I ask my right hand man's opinion. My right hand man, also known as my 9 year old son Drew, said, "OH COOL". Yes that is a good first reaction. Drew continued to read the book, laugh out loud often, and then request a printed copy for later rereading. What great feedback.

I thought the funny looking birds and pigs were very humorous. I thought the comic wonderfully written and drawn. It was appropriate to it's target audience (big kids / adults) and will provide hours of entertainment. I remain in awe at the marketing behind this whole product, or was it just an accident that these birds and pigs be came so famous??



BOOK DESCRIPTION:

The Angry Birds are on the move by air, land, and sea in this exciting volume that collects the first four issues of the series! Join Eisner-nominated creators Jeff Parker and Paul Tobin as they lead the flock through wild adventures across the birds' island home. Enjoy the sights and sounds of Piggyland, the funnest place on the planet! Discover the plots of the deceptive pigs as they attempt to swipe a nest-full of eggs! Feel the action as the Angry Birds crash through every page! See it all in this awesome collection based on the best-selling game!




View all my reviews